Womply’s “Efortless Offers” is a new offers platform that links local merchants’ discounts to all major credit and debit cards, including Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover. Live now in the D.C. area, with plans to roll out to five additional markets by early January, the service feels like a daily deal site for consumers, but works like targeted advertising for local merchants.
The key differences between Womply and something like Groupon are that the offers are personalized for the consumers and are directed towards specific audiences. They don’t require a certain number of buyers in order to “tip,” and there are no coupons to print.
The company, which just launched last week in the D.C. area, was founded by former GM and Head of Sales at LivingSocial Brandt Squires, whose old startup, BuyYourFriendADrink was acquired by LivingSocial in 2009, and Toby Scammell (yes, him, but lets not doom Womply on a 24-year-old’s mistake, shall we?)
Womply has raised nearly $1 million from Dave McClure of 500 Startups and Deebek Ventures, LLC.
Here’s how Womply’s Effortless Offers works:
Upon signup, via Facebook login typically, Womply can tap into the customer’s Facebook profile data to initially locate and display the best offer in the neighborhood. To claim the deal, the customer will purchase it on their credit or debit card. Later, when they visit the merchant, they pay the full price for the goods or service provided. Womply, which has partnerships with banks and other financial partners, can spot the transaction and then credit the difference. The credit shows up within two days.
Although Womply means customers spend more money upfront, there are several benefits to the service, both for consumers and merchants alike. Consumers don’t have to remember to print out coupons or carry them around with them – they can just use their credit or debit card as usual to receive the deal. Also, because the deals require the additional upfront investment, consumers are less likely to buy a deal on impulse, and are more likely to purchase only those deals they plan to use. The targeting and personalization helps cut down on the noise created by daily deals, too, which is the same route Google is now going with its Google Offers product.
For merchants, Womply’s ability to spot the transactions means it knows how many offers were redeemed with 100% confidence. In addition, because of Womply’s personalization capabilities, merchants don’t view Womply as a “daily deals” service – they view it as something more akin to targeted advertising.
Further down the road, Womply will be able to use its transaction-spotting capabilities to further refine the deals it pitches consumers and reward their loyalty to specific merchants. This is likely the basis of its next, still undisclosed, second product which will roll out in a few weeks.
D.C. area residents can sign up for Womply now here.